Still of the Night (song)

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For the song of the same name by Quiet Riot, see QR III.
"Still of the Night"
Single by Whitesnake
from the album Whitesnake
B-side "Here I Go Again" and "You're Gonna Break My Heart Again"
Released 21 May 1987 (UK)
7 June 1987 (US)
Format Vinyl LP
Cassette
CD
Recorded 1986
Genre Heavy metal
Length 6:41(album version), 3:58 (single version)
Label Geffen, EMI
Writer(s) David Coverdale
John Sykes
Producer(s) Mike Stone
Keith Olsen
Whitesnake singles chronology
"Is This Love"
(1987)
"Still of the Night"
(1987)
"Crying in the Rain '87"
(1987)

"Still of the Night" (also known as "In the Still of the Night") is a song by Whitesnake. It was released as the fourth single and third track from their hugely successful self titled 1987 album. It reached #16 in the U.K.,[1] #18 on the U.S. Mainstream Rock Tracks and #79 on the Billboard Hot 100[2] when it was released on 9 March 1987. In 2009 it was named the 27th best hard rock song of all time by VH1.[3]

Background[edit]

The song was written by lead singer David Coverdale and guitarist John Sykes, and proved to be one of the band's most popular songs. It combines the blues origins of the band with the more distorted, harder sound driving the song, making for a powerful hard rock song. The current Whitesnake lineup and John Sykes both play the song as their live encore.

In 2009, in an interview with Metal Hammer, Coverdale commented on the origins of the song:

"When my mother died I was going through the stuff at her house and found some early demo cassettes. One of them was a song that Ritchie Blackmore and I had been working on which was the basic premise of what would become "Still of the Night". It was totally unrecognizable, so Ritchie doesn't have anything to worry about... neither do I! Ha ha ha! I took it as far as I could then I gave it to Sykesy when we were in the south of France, and he put the big guitar hero stuff on there. John hated blues so I had to work within those parameters. I manipulated to be electric blues, but how he performed it was fabulous for his time and relatively unique because of the songs. There were a lot of people doing that widdly stuff but they didn't have the quality of those songs."

A music video, featuring Coverdale's then future wife Tawny Kitaen, was shot for the song, and it was MTV's most requested video in its first week of release.

Whitesnake withheld licensing of "Still of the Night" for use in the video game Rock Revolution; a cover version of the song was subsequently featured in the game. The studio version later appeared as Rock Band DLC in 2012.

The Finnish symphonic metal singer Tarja Turunen covered the song for her album What Lies Beneath.

Composition[edit]

Still of the Night has a very unique form that has intrigued many of its listeners. It was noted by Harrison Marcello, guitarist and classical composer, that the song is in Sonata form. Something very unusual for modern pop and rock music. This is how Marcello analyzed the track:

Theme group 1: 0:12

Theme group 2: 0:49

Repeat.

Development: 2:03

Recap: 4:35

Coda: 5:17

Whether or not this was intentional has yet to be confirmed by the band.

Track listing[edit]

  1. "Still of the Night" - 6:38
  2. "Here I Go Again" - 4:33
  3. "You're Gonna Break My Heart Again" - 4:11

Personnel[edit]

References[edit]